Image Source: iStockPhoto

Image Source: iStockPhoto

I am not really breaking my boundary.

Truth? Or lie?

This little bite won’t matter beyond satisfied.

Truth? Or lie?

God doesn’t really care about my eating.

Truth? Or lie?

I have been exercising so I deserve to eat this.

Truth? Or lie?

What do each of these statements, said in an attempt to justify eating outside of my boundaries, have in common?

They are all lies.

Most of the time we violate our boundaries, it starts in the seed of a lie.  We may call it “justifying,” but it is, simply, lying to ourselves.

Since this study is about being transformed by the renewing of our minds,  since we have been evaluating the lies that we believe and rejecting these lies and replacing them with truth, one of the best places to look is the tiny little “mistruths” we tell ourselves that erode our resolve to live according to our boundaries.

I have asked everyone participating in this study (and even those of you not in this study may want to do this) to evaluate: Are you convinced that God is calling you to the primary boundary of eating within the parameter of physical hunger and satisfaction? 0 and 5?

Many of us, in a moment of clarity, were convinced that God was calling us to this. We don’t want to lose sight of that. Anything we tell ourselves that minimizes that conviction should be scrutinized. Here is a video about this:

This week’s assignment:

1.) How about settling this question in your mind: Are you convinced that God is calling you to 0 to 5 eating or eating within the parameter of physical hunger and satisfaction? If you are convinced that this is GOD’s call to you, jot it down in your journal: “I know God is calling me to eat within 0 and 5” or other statement that reflects your conviction. Date it. If you did this last week, go to the place in your journal where you wrote it down and write today’s date with an affirmation that you are recommitting to 0 and 5. This is important. If we aren’t convinced that this boundary is what GOD is calling us to, then we will rationalize and justify a million reasons not to live according to it!

In a moment of clarity, when we aren’t tempted, we prayerfully welcome God to convict our hearts about the boundaries HE has for us. Whatever these may be, we want to establish a way of remembering this moment. It is important and will serve as a guiding principle for our lives!

2.) Evaluate your secondary boundaries that you established last week. If you are doing just fine with those, you may want to ask God to show you another boundary to add or to trade out or modify. Remember, secondary boundaries support you in maintaining your ability to abide by your primary boundary of 0 and 5. Jot down in your journal what your new (or revised) secondary boundaries will be.

3.) Go to Barb Raveling’s website and read and complete the study she has on Justification Eating found here by jotting the answers down in your journal. As when we did this study last spring, it will be helpful for us to remember that Barb isn’t a Thin Within participant. Please don’t be thrown off by her reference to “calories.” Keep focused on what God has led you to do and invite him to show you the benefit you can glean from her material! It is great stuff! We just have to skip over some dieting jargon from time to time.

4.) List in your journal 5-10 “small lies” you tell (or have told) yourself to justify eating outside of your primary boundary of 0 and 5.

5.) Beneath each lie you have exposed, write down the TRUTH in that situation. If you find this helpful, continue the process, stopping every 5 to 10 of these to be sure to write the corresponding TRUTH down for each.

6.) Journal: If you start telling yourself the truth about your eating, will it affect how diligently you follow your primary and secondary boundaries? Are you willing to do this today? If not, why not?

7.) What food or eating experience are you most likely to justify going outside of your primary boundary (of eating 0 to 5) in order to experience?

For example: I love to go out to almost any restaurant for Mexican food. I know that when I sit down to the meal, I will eat enough chips and salsa to no longer be hungry, yet I still want to eat some of the meal when it arrives. I tend to tell myself “I am still hungry” when the meal comes to justify eating as much as I would have if I hadn’t eaten any chips to start with!

7.) Strategize what you can do about this situation.

For example: I will ask the server to bring the chips with the meal and consider it part of my portion.


When the chips arrive, I will takego to the restroom and take a time out. This will cut into the amount of time that I will have eating chips and salsa before the meal arrives. I will use the time in the restroom to review my truth cards (if I have them with me) or to remember what is true about my boundaries and the joy I have when I live according to them. When I get back to the table, I will slow my eating of chips or intentionally have only 5 or 10 chips with salsa. I will remind myself of the truth that I rejoice in living within my God-given boundaries.

8.) List things that are true whenever you have broken your 0 to 5 eating boundaries. How do you feel when you break your 0 to 5 boundaries? What does it do for you? List what is true about breaking your 0 and 5 boundaries so that when you are considering breaking your boundaries with your justification, you can look at your list of how you feel *after* you have broken your boundaries and remember! You might want to add this list to your TRUTH cards. “When I eat outside of my boundaries, I _____________”

For example: After I have broken my 0 to 5 eating boundaries, I am filled with regret.  After I have broken my 0 to 5 eating boundaries, I worry that I won’t stop. The joy of eating outside of my boundaries is momentary compared to the time spent frustrated with myself.

How is justification eating telling yourself a lie? What truths can you tell yourself when you are faced with a moment of decision about whether or not to give in to the temptation to eat outside of your boundaries?

Note: If you are just joining us, you can go to this page and see what we have done so far. Come on along!

10.) As a final part of the assignment, consider posting here some of the things that God showed you about the lies you tell yourself and the truth to counter those lies…OR anything else that you may want to share with others. If you have a question feel free to post it here as well! 🙂